Harry Morgan said that playing Colonel Potter in M*A*S*H made him a better person

"My character is practically me."

As an actor, you have the ability to affect the characters you play, looking after them in the same way a parent might look after a child. There are many times when, at the inevitable end of a series, some actors are sad to see their character go, regarding the departure with the same emotion as saying goodbye to a good friend. It's par for the course that if you're a good enough actor, you can change the character. However, a little-known fact is that when you're a great actor, that character changes you right back.

You shouldn't be surprised that Harry Morgan received nothing but glowing reviews from his fellow M*A*S*H actors who spent years working with him on set. An article in The Los Angeles Times called Morgan "the glue" that held the cast together, much like his character holds everything together on the show. Morgan's easygoing and supportive attitude made him right at home with the rest of the cast when he joined the series in the fourth season. He said, "Even though there's a lot of horseplay, the whole tone here has been so gentle."

It was such a gentle environment that Morgan seemed to be aware of his good fortune. He commented, "Any kind of working relationship I get into after this show will not be M*A*S*H in any way, shape, or form." 

Morgan had stated that he felt that he and Colonel Potter were the same. "My character is practically me." While Morgan had an incredibly diverse career, any role he played was never far from himself. "I think it's very hard for most actors to get very far away from themselves. I played mostly the heavy when I first started in pictures, and I've played everything I can think of, but I don't know in how many cases I really got that far away from himself." 

Morgan was so close to Potter that he admitted that he could very well be a better man because of the role. He said, "I don't think [playing Potter] changed me as an actor. It may have helped me a bit as a human being. You can't spend that many years with this bunch, getting such deep satisfaction out of your work, without it having some effect on you, and for the better."

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27 Comments

Adamtwelvia 4 months ago
Can't believe Potter is already coming back this Thursday!
Beta6 4 months ago
He was my most favorite character while I watched the show. How Potter handled really delicate situations, and of course the obvious ones, was a treat to hear and see. I think one of the "delicate" situations I enjoyed best was when a nurse of his age came to the Camp and both Potter and the nurse drew together quickly. He was very drawn to her..and she to him. He stopped the romance aborning. In the best of ways. If I know that the episode is coming on...I will stop what I am doing and watch it again.
Adamtwelvia Beta6 4 months ago
He's my #2 favoritr, right behind Klinger
Andybandit 4 months ago
I like when HM joined the cast of MASH as Colonel Potter. He was a father figure for everyone. Especially Radar.
italianrose74 4 months ago
I think Harry Morgan joining Mash was a brilliant career move for him. Although he had many roles in tv shows and movies after Dragnet which lead to Mash.
I thjnk it needs to be said that even though Dragnet was and is the pillar stone of all modern day police shows. Thanks to Jack Webb. Harry Morgan’s role as Col. Potter in Mash allowed him to show what a fantastic actor he was with a large cast. Not to mention he aged like fine wine between Dragnet and Mash! Got to give it the man for that. 👏
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LoveMETV22 italianrose74 4 months ago
Sorry don't feel your opinion on most of your viewpoint's. I enjoy M*A*S*H! Just not 2 hours. 1 hour was adequate! Oh well! "AITF" is an OK series! Some viewers may not feel that way, but that's their prerogative! Seems you have a select view on certain series( and that's you right). However I think Weigel could/should make a schedule/ programming change to their schedule.
LoveMETV22 italianrose74 3 months ago
"Did you know that Svengoolie trends every Saturday on “X” formally Twitter."
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Svengoolie (Part of Weigel), has a dedicated website that uses the same commenting system as these threads. It's set-up in their blogs. There are a number of regulars that visit the site. The commenting system is very active during the movie on Saturday evenings.
LoveMETV22 italianrose74 3 months ago
" "Did you know that Svengoolie trends every Saturday on “X” formally Twitter."
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Here's a screenshot from last nights blog. It's a very active blog especially on Saturdays.

Adamtwelvia italianrose74 3 months ago
I wouldn't call MASH "wholesome family" entertainment.
Also, I tried to watch "Sonny and Cher" once and I didn't get much of it
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